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Fei-Fei Li (李飞飞)

Computer Scientist, Professor

Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence

What makes Fei-Fei Li (李飞飞) a Global Shaker?

One of the most prestigious experts in artificial intelligence today, Dr Fei-Fei Li (李飞飞) aims to make the technology better for humanity. She is the co-director of the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence as well as the inaugural Sequoia Professor in the computer science department at Stanford University.

“There’s nothing artificial about AI,” she said during a hearing at the US House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology entitled Artificial Intelligence—With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility. “It’s inspired by people, it’s created by people, and—most importantly—it impacts people. It is a powerful tool we are only just beginning to understand, and that is a profound responsibility.”

Dr Li is one of the few scientists who can boast some of the most recent innovations in the field among their accomplishments. She is the inventor, leading scientist and principal investigator of ImageNet and the ImageNet Challenge—a database with over 14 million images designed for use in visual object recognition software research, thus contributing to many of the latest developments in deep learning and AI. Dr Li has over 200 publications in top-tier journals and conferences to her name, and work from her research lab has been featured in  the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fortune Magazine, Science, Wired Magazine, MIT Technology Review and the Financial Times.

From 2013 to 2018, she was the director of Stanford’s AI Lab. While she was on sabbatical from January 2017 to September 2018, she served as vice president of Google Cloud AI and chief scientist of AI/ML at Google Cloud. She co-founded the Cloud AI business unit and established Google AI’s China centre during this time.

As an advocate for increasing diversity and inclusion in STEM fields, she is the co-founder and chairperson of the national non-profit AI4ALL, an organisation aimed encouraging underrepresented youth to pursue an education in AI.

“We still do not have enough women, and especially underrepresented minorities, even in the pipeline coming into the lab,” she said in an interview with Wired. “Students go to an AI conference and they see 90 percent people of the same gender. And they don’t see African Americans nearly as much as white boys.”

Dr Li earned her bachelor’s in physics from Princeton and her PhD degree in electrical engineering from California Institute of Technology.

Tags: Artificial Intelligence, cloud technology, Diversity and Inclusion, Google, machine learning, Women in Science, Women in Tech

Last updated: February 11, 2020